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Computed Tomography

How Computed Tomography works:

Computed tomography (CT) combines the power of an X-ray with computer technology to provide detailed images of internal organs. The painless, five to 20-minute scan produces 360-degree, cross sectional views of the human body. This allows the radiologist to provide a diagnosis for the patient, and a treatment plan to be formed.

The CT suite at Dignity Health Sequoia Hospital performed nearly 17,000 exams in the 2017 fiscal year. Overall, the hospital supports nearly 40,000 medical imaging exams per year in six different disciplines. 

Moreover, CT is vital to Sequoia’s Precision Biopsy Program, which pushes the limits of modern biopsy techniques and is working towards starting new clinical trials.

CT scanners help in:

  • Diagnosing patients with various cancers, and facilitating their treatment progress and post-treatment monitoring
  • Biopsy procedures for patients with small nodules in body locations that require precise needle targeting, such as next to the aorta
  • Quickly diagnosing stroke so that clot-busting drugs can be administered, if appropriate
  • Speedy and detailed imaging for patients needing a wide range of medical care, including emergency, trauma, pediatrics, surgical, renal, critical care, and vascular care

Investing in the future: What is needed?

Sequoia’s current 64-slice CT scanner was installed in June 2005 and was expected to last approximately 10 years. Having reached “end of life,” the scanner is experiencing ever-increasing downtime due to maintenance needs, which impacts patient care.

To meet patient diagnosis and care needs, the CT suite will undergo renovations beginning in 2020, with a new 128-slice, dual-source scanner, planned to be installed and operational in 2021.

Investing in our community: Serving more patients, with a better experience

  • More comfortable supports and rests for patients while they’re undergoing scans
  • Much quieter patient experience, thanks to new chilling equipment that will cool the scanner’s mechanisms
  • Additional technology and scanning options, with two x-ray tubes and detectors for improved and simultaneous imaging of blood, bone, and soft tissue


How will a new CT scanner help Sequoia to invest in innovation?

  • Supports the Precision Biopsy Program now
  • Prepares us for liquid biopsy in the future
  • Will provide the data we need to keep pushing the limits of cancer care


Improving Computed Tomography Scanning

Goal: To combine interventional radiology with molecular biology for an improved diagnostic and therapeutic approach for cancer.